There is one thing we all have in common. We smell like human. In fact Scientists have found that Elk actually find humans a much bigger threat than
Elk respond more strongly to threats from humans than from wolves, and they are more likely to flee for protected refuges if there are hunters in
the area, a recent study has found.
The findings by a team of scientists from Montana State University illustrate one of the difficulties in using hunting to manage elk populations
across the West when the ungulates respond very quickly and dramatically to hunters in the area.
As every hunter already knows the animals are already well aware that you are a predator. They will run at the sight of you and they recognize your
scent. They can smell your skin and your sweat. They recognize the perfumes in the detergents we use to wash our clothes and the cologne we wear.
Their sense of smell is extremely good and they will be able to smell you from quite a distance. If you do not do something about your scent and the
wind is not on your side, your expedition will most likely end up being nothing more than a nice stroll through the woods.
In an end of civilization scenario, unless you want to forage for berries the rest of your life, you're going to need to get some red meat. In order
to do that you're going to have to hunt.. There are already many cover scents and scent blockers available on the market, but sporting good shops will
be a thing of the past... so what is a hunter to do?
DIY Scent Blocker at Home Base:
1. Gather materials from the area you are going to hunt. This will most likely be pine needles / bark (pine bark is the best), leaves or grasses
(maybe all of the above). Be sure to get a decent amount of these.
2. Find a clean water source and fill a pot, tap water generally contains chlorine and fluoride which the animals can usually pick up. Nice spring or
river water, or distilled water is a much better choice.
3. Heat the pot to just before boiling and add your materials to the water. DO NOT BOIL
4. Simmer for about an hour, I would recommend doing this outdoors as the smell will be quite strong.
5. Allow your finished scent blocker to cool as you do not want to scald yourself. Once cooled place the blocker in an empty spray bottle (I would
recommend a nice baking soda and water rinse of the bottle to get rid of any extra smells... of course if civilization as we know it has ended, just
rinse it really good..)
6. Spray it all over your clothes, boots, hat, skin and hair.. you now smell like the forest.. This will not last forever, be sure to reapply every
hour or two.
Another way to add to this is to store your hunting clothes for at least a couple days in a plastic bag (tote, any sort of container) with a good
amount of dirt, pine needles, leaves, grasses, sage brush etc. depending on where you're hunting.
Blocking Scent in the Field
There are a few nice ways to do this.. The easiest one is digging holes with a stick.. The smell of the fresh soil will go into the air and cover the
smell of human. Another thing you can do is use wicks (a peice of cloth) tied to a tree with your spray on it..
The best thing to use on a wick though (since attractants don't exist anymore) is skunk spray.. If you at any point managed to trap a skunk that scent
gland is a wild game gold mine. Game animals are generally not threatened by the smell of skunk, they smell it all the time. If you have skunk smell
it's guaranteed to all but eliminate your smell for a long distance.
Also gather a bunch of pine needles and rub them between your fingers while you are waiting for an animal. It will give you something to do with your
hands and you will notice that the scent from them is greatly amplified by the friction.
These simple things will make your life a lot easier when it comes to hunting.
I would also recommend my guide to cleaning wild game.
Meat in the Wilderness - Guide to Preparing Game
On the other side of the spectrum I think it's worth noting that not only can they smell you, but you'll be surprised how well you can smell them. Do
not underestimate your sense of smell just because it's a human nose..
edit on 30-8-2012 by DaMod because: (no reason
edit on 30-8-2012 by DaMod because: (no reason given)